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File Tag Repository and .M4A Files - Printable Version

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+--- Thread: File Tag Repository and .M4A Files (/showthread.php?tid=10700)



File Tag Repository and .M4A Files - kblagron - 10-22-2018

I decided to add some of my daughter's M4A files into the File Tag Repository and am using the Sonos Media Renderer to play.  The problem I am having is with the display of the .M4A songs.

I am using modified templates from the Autogen to display them in the IV.  The M4A files get included into the repository fine (at least they are being counted).  Info about the album name, cover art, and year show up, but the title, artist and length show up empty.  (as viewed by the media repo text widget).  The Media Repo Item browser also shows empty entries, however you can click on where a song should be populated if it was showing the text, and it will execute the command below it and add the song into the playlist and play.

I don't have this problem with MP3's, so I figured it was related to the M4A format only.  I have also reconfigured the repository to just include the M4A songs, and the same thing happens.  They play fine, but you can't see what artist, title, and length are, just the album name and cover art.  I used the Explorer -> Properties -> Details to verify that the data is there within the M4A file.


RE: File Tag Repository and .M4A Files - Dean Roddey - 10-22-2018

If you can send me one of the files that doesn't work, I can take a look at it and see why it's not getting the info. There might also be meta data in there in some other form besides the standard M4A/MPEG4 format and that's what the explorer details is seeing, I dunno. There are various tools out there to standardize metadata and running one over those files might be worthwhile.


RE: File Tag Repository and .M4A Files - kblagron - 10-22-2018

I sent one to you via email.

I am using MusicBrainz Picard to tag these.  I have the options set up to use ID3v2 Version 2.4 with Text encoding of ISO-8859-1.  I also have the option checked to use ID3v1 tags in the files.


RE: File Tag Repository and .M4A Files - Dean Roddey - 10-22-2018

AAC/MPEG4 files have their own metadata tag set, and that is what is expected on those types of files. I'm not sure why it would offer to let you use regular ID3 type tags. I would think most programs would only look for those in MP3 files. Does it have an option for native AAC/M4A type tags?


RE: File Tag Repository and .M4A Files - kblagron - 10-22-2018

I checked the Tag type using MP3Tag, and it lists them as an MP4 tag, which the other MP3 files I have list those as ID3v2.4, so I would think they are tagged correctly.

When you use Windows Explorer and look at the tag using Explorer -> Properties -> Details it all shows up as you would expect.  Are you seeing that the file I sent you is not tagged correctly?


RE: File Tag Repository and .M4A Files - Dean Roddey - 10-22-2018

I haven't looked at it yet, but I know that it looks specifically for MP4 tags in AAC type files. If you are using MP3 tags, they won't be seen. The explorer may look for both types. That's fine for a one shot display in the explorer, but that's high overhead if doing large numbers of files, particularly across the network, very high.

I'll look at it tomorrow once I get a compilable system again. I'm doing some plumbing work.


RE: File Tag Repository and .M4A Files - Dean Roddey - 10-23-2018

OK, looking at that file, the only difference between what Windows explorer shows and mine is that they are taking the album artist as the track artist if there is no explicit track artist. So I updated mine to do the same. There is no track name in the file, and explorer doesn't show it either.

So, with that change, I should be getting the same stuff. Do you see the track name in explorer for the file you sent me?


RE: File Tag Repository and .M4A Files - kblagron - 10-24-2018

I am getting the track name, but it is listed as Title - assume that is the same. 

I am sending 3 screenshots - One from Explorer, One from the MP3Tag application, which tags both MP3 and MP4 file formats, and one from my CQC IV.  On the CQC IV screenshot, just below the album name, the track and artist should be showing, but they are empty.


RE: File Tag Repository and .M4A Files - Dean Roddey - 10-24-2018

It must be inferring the title from the file name or something. I don't think it's in any meta tags, at least not any MP4 ones. The AAC title tag is @nam and there's none such in that file, or nothing else that indicates the track name. There are some proprietary tags that I don't know the content of but I that's not something Windows would be picking up either. So it must be getting it from the file name.

Well, it's not the file name. I renamed it and it still shows the same title name. I don't know where it's getting that unless it's from some non-AAC tag.

OK, so opening it up in a binary editor, I see it as the end of the 'data' tag, mixed with some binary data. I'm not sure how to interpret that but I'll see what I can find out. That has to be where it's coming from. It's the only instance of that text in the whole file.


RE: File Tag Repository and .M4A Files - Dean Roddey - 10-24-2018

Oh, I see what's going on. The tag structure is slightly different from what I thought. There is the main 'list' tag for the metadata type tags, but it has no data, instead the first tag is immediately after it as a nested child tag. I was skipping something there, which was taking me past the name part of the first tag, to the data content of the first tag. So I was seeing 'data' as a tag, which doesn't make sense in retrospect, it's just the child content tag. So I'd always miss the first real tag name, and in this case the track name was the first tag.

OK, it should be happy after the next drop.